2017 Fiat 500X exterior matte paint brown at sunset ・ Photo by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles
Matte paint emphasizes and accentuates a car’s design details much differently than a typical tri-coat or metallic finish. And though black is probably the most popular matte color for a car, any shade can be done in a matte finish (depending, of course, on how much you’re willing to pay). Matte finishes convey an air of exclusivity, and they can be found on everything from a special edition of an everyday sport compact to a top-tier luxury model. Here are 10 of our favorite cars avaialble with matte paint, ranging from the reasonably affordable to the completely unthinkable.
Of the matte cars we’re featuring here, the Hyundai Veloster is among the most accessible. The Rally Edition, featuring an exclusive matte-blue finish, carries an MSRP of $23,950, which should be doable for many buyers. The paint creates enticing shadows over the Veloster’s dramatic haunches and really enhances the looks of this sporty coupe. The Rally Edition offers perks above and beyond its paint color, too, such as a unique body kit (further setting apart this limited edition from the base model), 18-inch multispoke alloy wheels, an upgraded suspension, a turbocharged engine, and a 6-speed manual transmission complete with a short-shift kit.
Photo by Hyundai
The crossover version of Fiat's 500 hot hatch borrows plenty from its stablemate—styling, personality, and colors bright enough to make Bob Ross smile. It’s also one of the more affordable cars on our list of models available with matte paint. If a 500X buyer is willing to bypass the bright orange, yellow, and blue options, there’s Bronzo Magnetico Opaco, too, which coats the 500X in a flattering matte bronze. This option costs $1000, but lends the 500X a unique sophistication that is, in our estimation, well worth the splurge. Go for the brown and gray interior color combination to really heighten the effect and make the 500X stand out from the masses.
Photo by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles
There are a lot of fun things about the 2016 Dodge Viper, but what we’re most interested in right now is its looks. This is a sports car that looks particularly good wearing a matte paint color, and according to Dodge’s online configurator, any of the Viper’s available shades can be customized to a matte finish—assuming you’re willing to pay to play. The available options include several hues of blue, some reds and oranges, a purple, a bright green, and the typical shades of gray. Dodge also offers the options of a totally custom color. If you’re shelling out upwards of $88,000 for a Viper anyway (and likely much, much more), don’t cut corners at the finish line and let the perfect matte paint color slip away.
Photo by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles
We’re cheating a bit here, because the FIAT 124 Spider isn’t available from the factory with a full matte finish. However, it is available with a matte-black racing stripe, so wide it covers a third of this tiny roadster’s exterior. As far as we’re concerned, it counts. Just order the highest trim level of the 124 Spider, the Abarth (which includes plenty of performance goodies to justify the $28,195 MSRP). It’s unfortunate that Fiat's designers haven’t tapped the 500 palette, because the Spider’s color options are limited to white, red, gray, and black. But, for another $1995, the Racing Heritage Black Center Band will get you (some of) the matte effect you’re craving.
Photo by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles
The 2016 BMW i8 is another car that’s available with matte paint from the factory, but only as an accent color. It looks so cool that we’re going with it (and finishing this car in full matte would probably be overkill, anyway). The i8’s available in a range of base exterior colors ranging from white to pearl white to silver to gray, so it’s a good thing that they spice it up a bit with the trim. The accent color, visible as swipes on the door sills and grille, comes in two options: matte Frozen Grey and matte Frozen Blue. The Frozen paints are borrowed from limited editions of several older BMW models, but look perfectly appropriate as the finishing touches on this $140,000 electric sports car.
Photo by BMW
The Bentley Continental is another car that lends credence to the notion that factory matte paint is a perk intended primarily for the super wealthy. White Satin is one such shade, introduced specifically for the Continental Supersports model, though it’s now available on a wider range of the Bentley lineup. Bentley offers so many paint colors and finishes that scrolling through the online configurator is a little like browsing the nail polish selection at Ulta (who knew a car could come in so many shades of pink?), but just listen to the White Satin description: "a contemporary colour choice thanks to its distinctive matt finish and subtle metallic undertone." If you want to glow with class and taste, you can just stop there.
Photo by Bentley Media
The redesigned Audi R8 is available in Camouflage Green Matte for $2100 above the car’s $162,900 base price, earning it a spot on our list of cars with matte paint. That said, we think you can do better. If you’d rather not drive a sports car in the same color as a military Humvee, you’ve got options. Audi plays it a little coy; the company’s online configurator directs interested parties to visit a dealership for more information about custom paint finishes. But the short story is that, yes, Audi will customize your R8 with another color of matte paint if you so choose. Matte colors, particularly grays, were popular on the first-generation R8, and the car’s gorgeous profile and carbon-fiber trim look great in a flat finish.
Photo by Audi
Just because Tesla makes the Model 3 doesn’t mean you can buy one… at least not anytime soon. And just because Tesla built a matte-black Model 3 doesn’t mean you’ll be able to buy that, either. When Tesla unveiled the Model 3 in spring of 2016, one of the prototypes on display was a sleek matte black, which immediately generated so much interest that Elon Musk said that he’d consider offering it as a production model. By that point, though, Tesla was already knee-deep in Model 3 advance orders from buyers who were willing to part with hefty security deposits for a car that might not be available for a year or more. In other words, if Tesla ever does offer a matte-black Model 3, it probably won’t be until after the hype has cooled down.
Photo by Vimeo (via Tesla.com)
The Lamborghini Aventador is lustworthy under all circumstances, but if you’re looking for a matte-finish car, this svelte Italian sports car gets even more enticing. The Aventador is available in the “regular” bright blues, greens, and oranges that help this car turn heads, but if an off-the-line color isn’t exclusive enough for you, Lamborghini’s Ad Personam program will soothe all your woes. Ad Personam helps you customize your new Lambo down to the very finest detail. There are six matte paint colors available through Ad Personam (including a range of Batmobile-worthy blacks and grays) and the program also offers carbon-fiber trim, clear engine bay covers, and lots of other clever ways to spend money.
Photo by Lamborghini
The last car on this Autobytel list of 10 cars with matte paint is the Ford GT, and this supercar might be the hardest car in our group to actually find and buy (yeah, even more so than the Aventador). Ford is building the GT in very limited quantities, with past GT owners getting priority on the waiting list. But if you do score a slot in GT production, you have the opportunity to buy it in matte black. That’s a tough call, honestly, because the exclusive Ford Liquid Blue (which is not matte) is truly a stunning color and is a perfect match for the GT design. Of course, we aren’t here to tell anyone what to do. We wouldn’t pass up a Ford GT whether it was matte or not.
Photo by Ford